In this review of Robert Pippin's recent book, elements of Hegel's Practical Philosophy are assessed both against opposed philosophical positions and by the guidance they offer in thinking through the practical matter of deciding what to eat.
I set out to trace the history of a distinctive conception of self-consciousness -- from its first formulation in the 3rd century BC, through its reception among Roman philosophers around the 1st century AD, and finally to its fate in Enlightenment thought of the 18th century. I use this history to clarify and defend an idea that figured centrally in the history of philosophy, but which has recently come under sustained attack: the idea that human beings are in some very (...) fundamental way self- conscious beings, and that our self-consciousness serves as a kind of foundation or transcendental condition for our other cognitive capacities. Obviously, given the scale of these ambitions, the presentation here should be considered at best a sketch. It is intended not to settle any matters, but at least to bring back into view a line of argument that has been covered over by more recent developments. (shrink)
Wayne Martin traces attempts to develop theories of judgment in British Empiricism, the logical tradition stemming from Kant, nineteenth-century psychologism, recent experimental neuropsychology, and the phenomenological tradition associated with Brentano, Husserl and Heidegger. His reconstruction of vibrant but largely forgotten nineteenth-century debates links Kantian approaches to judgment with twentieth-century phenomenological accounts. He also shows that the psychological, logical and phenomenological dimensions of judgment are not only equally important, but fundamentally interlinked.
In this paper I investigate the representation of self-consciousness in the still life tradition in the Netherlands around the time of Descartes’ residence there. I treat the paintings of this tradition as both a phenomenological resource and as a phenomenological undertaking in their own right. I begin with an introductory overview of the still life tradition, with particular attention to semiotic structures characteristic of the vanitas still life. I then focus my analysis on the representation of self-consciousness in this tradition, (...) identifying both a Cartesian mode of representation of self-consciousness but also a counter trend. (shrink)
In this paper I lay the foundations for an understanding of one of Fichte's most neglected and least understood texts: the late lecture course on Transcendental Logic. I situate this work in the context of Fichte's lifelong struggle with the problem of understanding the relation between logic and philosophy – a problem that I show to figure centrally both in Fichte's own revolutionary thinking and in his response to Kant's notorious denunciation of the Wissenschaftslehre. By attending to this context we (...) can understand Fichte's philosophical ambitions in the late lectures: a critique of particular doctrines of general logic; a critique of the conception of thought presupposed both by the traditional logic and by Kant himself; and a new conception of the relation between logic and the philosophical theory of experience. (shrink)
An influential interpretation of phenomenology construes Husserl's project as an attempt to generalize the Fregean notion of sense- an attempt to extend Frege's analysis of the structure of meaningful expressions to a more general account of the structure of meaning in experience . Michael Dummett has articulated a broadly Fregean critique of this Husserlian program, arguing that the project is misguided and retrograde-a relapse into the psychologism and idealism that Frege sought to avoid. A defense of Husserl is offered, based (...) in part on key elements of the theory of meaning articulated in his Logical Investigations . But the main aim is neither to acquit nor to convict Husserl of Dummett's charges; rather it is to use the exchange to investigate some of the philosophical commitments of a broadly Husserlian phenomenology. If we are to understand how Husserl avoids psychologism then we must come to terms with the paradoxical idea of an anti-psychologistic investigation of consciousness (an anti-psychologistic psychology). If we are to understand his complex stance toward idealism then we must not only understand the grounds for his rejection of subjective idealism but also be attuned to the other forms of idealism to which his project is committed. In the course of investigating these matters the author considers how Husserl can reply to the charge of explanatory vacuity, and shows that Frege himself recognizes the legitimacy of something like the Husserlian project. (shrink)